Meta’s social VR platform took a big step outside of Quest-exclusivity late last month, as the company launched a closed beta for Horizon Worlds on standard web browsers and Android. A version for iOS is now confirmed to arrive in “the coming weeks.”

Update (September 15th, 2023): Meta announced that in addition to rolling out early access version of Horizon Worlds on Android and web browsers, that iOS access is due to arrive in “the coming weeks.” For now, iOS users can play via Safari, however it seems the company is also set to include access directly in-app, as with the Android version. Access is still invite-only, which you can sign up for here.

The same country restrictions apply, only allowing access in the following regions: Canada, France, Iceland, Ireland, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

The previous version of the article below incorrectly stated that the browser version wasn’t available yet, however it actually arrived during the launch of Android access late last month. This has been updated in the body.

Original Article (August 28th, 2023): You won’t find Horizon Worlds on Google Play. Users taking part in the closed beta can directly launch the app through the Quest Android app. It’s also available through web browsers on both mobile and desktop. On desktop, Meta recommends Google Chrome, Safari, and Microsoft Edge, and says Firefox is currently not supported.

X (formerly Twitter) user Lunayian was apparently one of those chosen few, showing off a brief hands-on in the Super Rumble lobby, Meta’s first-party hero shooter revealed late last month.

At the time of this writing, the standard geolocation restrictions are still in effect for Horizon Worlds, with only users in the following countries able to access the platform: Canada, France, Iceland, Ireland, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Live Action VR Series 'The Faceless Lady' Debuts in 'Horizon Worlds' Next Month

When it does roll out to more locations and platforms though, it will be better positioned to actually compete with the most successful metaverse apps, such as Rec Room, Roblox, and VR Chat, all of which have benefited from releasing on essentially every major platform worldwide—VR headsets and traditional platforms included. Undoubtedly, Meta is looking to replicate this success with Horizon Worlds, as it is now offering up better (and decidedly more sticky) first-party content like Super Rumble.

We’re sure to learn more about new Horizon Worlds features at the company’s annual Connect developer conference soon, which takes place September 27th, steaming both online and in-person for a select few at the company’s Menlo Park headquarters.

Newsletter graphic

This article may contain affiliate links. If you click an affiliate link and buy a product we may receive a small commission which helps support the publication. More information.

Well before the first modern XR products hit the market, Scott recognized the potential of the technology and set out to understand and document its growth. He has been professionally reporting on the space for nearly a decade as Editor at Road to VR, authoring more than 3,500 articles on the topic. Scott brings that seasoned insight to his reporting from major industry events across the globe.
  • Xron

    Intersting, lets hope this idea works.

  • kakek

    My god, the image they chose to display on that phone…
    The 2 avatars …

    • CrusaderCaracal

      That’s the new hit look in 2023, being a new made up gender and weighing in over the 1000s

  • kakek

    I mean, who the hell do they think their target audience is here ?

    • sfmike

      I don’t say this to be mean but from all their advertising and related promotion it has always been the fact that they have addressed overweight female avatars as being one of their greatest achievements. Even now there is no masculine body shape to choose from as everyone is kind of non-binary and I believe that’s on purpose. Like Disney, I feel Meta has given too much control over development to a feminist work group that have decided, like Kathleen Kennedy says of the Star Wars Universe, I paraphrase, “The Future of VR is Female.” The results are the same as Disney is finding out that the public, female and male, are not interested in pushing agendas. We just want to have fun and make avatars that without being throttled into PC correctness that makes body shaming more important than user creativity.

  • sfmike

    Totally agree. How is taking Horizon out of VR making it more desirable to the public. It’s boring in VR so it won’t be better trying to navigate it on your cellphone. There are still too many overpaid morons at Meta that need to be culled.

    • scottosaur

      I only partly agree. Roblox and Horizon Worlds aren’t all that different, and Roblox is obviously massively successful. If Meta could find a user base for Worlds in 2D and “upsell” them to VR, it makes sense. And giving users access to their “worlds” even when they’re away from their headset makes sense if you’re really trying to foster a community or something.

      But…it’s still just not a very compelling product.

  • CrusaderCaracal

    What is the Zuckmeister thinking?? “Let’s take a already mediocre game that only really seems decent because it’s on a VR headset, and bring it out onto your phone”